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1.
JMIR Public Health Surveill ; 2021 Feb 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1085136

ABSTRACT

UNSTRUCTURED: In March 2020, WHO has declared COVID-19 as a global pandemic. COVID-19 pandemic has affected various public health functions and essential services in different ways and magnitude. Although all countries have witnessed the effect of COVID-19, the impact differed based on many different factors including the integrity and resiliency of the countries' health systems. This paper presents opinions and expectations of the authors about the anticipated changes in the future of public health at the global, regional, and national levels. The viewpoint is based on the current efforts and challenges that various stakeholders have carried out to control COVID-19, and the contribution from the literature on the future of public health. Numerous agencies and actors are involved in the fight against COVID-19 with variations in their effectiveness. The public health services showed weaknesses in most of the countries, in addition to the lack of adequate curative medicine settings. The pandemic highlighted the need for better governance and stronger and more resilient health systems and capacities. COVID-19 experience has also emphasized the importance of coordination and collaboration among the countries and stakeholders. The COVID-19 pandemic might lead to a wide discussion to improve international and national approaches to prepare for and respond to similar events in terms of preparedness and response mechanisms, and tools. Public health will not be the same as before COVID-19. New health priorities, approaches, and new agenda will be on the table of the global platforms and initiatives. More investment in research and technology to meet the demand for the new vaccines and medicines, innovative methods like distance learning and working, more respect and remuneration to health professionals, and normalization of the public health and social measures that were induced during the COVID-19 pandemic are expected to be seen in future.

3.
Infect Genet Evol ; 90: 104752, 2021 Feb 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1062517
5.
BMJ Glob Health ; 6(1)2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1048674

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 epidemic is the latest evidence of critical gaps in our collective ability to monitor country-level preparedness for health emergencies. The global frameworks that exist to strengthen core public health capacities lack coverage of several preparedness domains and do not provide mechanisms to interface with local intelligence. We designed and piloted a process, in collaboration with three National Public Health Institutes (NPHIs) in Ethiopia, Nigeria and Pakistan, to identify potential preparedness indicators that exist in a myriad of frameworks and tools in varying local institutions. Following a desk-based systematic search and expert consultations, indicators were extracted from existing national and subnational health security-relevant frameworks and prioritised in a multi-stakeholder two-round Delphi process. Eighty-six indicators in Ethiopia, 87 indicators in Nigeria and 51 indicators in Pakistan were assessed to be valid, relevant and feasible. From these, 14-16 indicators were prioritised in each of the three countries for consideration in monitoring and evaluation tools. Priority indicators consistently included private sector metrics, subnational capacities, availability and capacity for electronic surveillance, measures of timeliness for routine reporting, data quality scores and data related to internally displaced persons and returnees. NPHIs play an increasingly central role in health security and must have access to data needed to identify and respond rapidly to public health threats. Collecting and collating local sources of information may prove essential to addressing gaps; it is a necessary step towards improving preparedness and strengthening international health regulations compliance.


Subject(s)
Communicable Disease Control , Public Health Surveillance , /epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control/legislation & jurisprudence , Communicable Disease Control/methods , Communicable Disease Control/organization & administration , Communicable Disease Control/standards , Ethiopia , Health Policy , Humans , Nigeria , Pakistan
9.
BMJ Glob Health ; 5(9)2020 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-809261

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 has demonstrated that most countries' public health systems and capacities are insufficiently prepared to prevent a localised infectious disease outbreak from spreading. Strengthening national preparedness requires National Public Health Institutes (NPHIs), or their equivalent, to overcome practical challenges affecting timely access to, and use of, data that is critical to preparedness. Our situational analysis in collaboration with NPHIs in three countries-Ethiopia, Nigeria and Pakistan-characterises these challenges. Our findings indicate that NPHIs' role necessitates collection and analysis of data from multiple sources that do not routinely share data with public health authorities. Since initiating requests for access to new data sources can be a lengthy process, it is essential that NPHIs are routinely monitoring a broad set of priority indicators that are selected to reflect the country-specific context. NPHIs must also have the authority to be able to request rapid sharing of data from public and private sector organisations during health emergencies and to access additional human and financial resources during disease outbreaks. Finally, timely, transparent and informative communication of synthesised data from NPHIs will facilitate sustained data sharing with NPHIs from external organisations. These actions identified by our analysis will support the availability of robust information systems that allow relevant data to be collected, shared and analysed by NPHIs sufficiently rapidly to inform a timely local response to infectious disease outbreaks in the future.


Subject(s)
Access to Information , Communicable Disease Control/organization & administration , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Disease Outbreaks/prevention & control , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Public Health Practice , Betacoronavirus , Disaster Planning , Ethiopia/epidemiology , Humans , Nigeria/epidemiology , Pakistan/epidemiology
16.
J Formos Med Assoc ; 2020 Jul 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-665197
17.
J Pak Med Assoc ; 70(Suppl 3)(5): S48-S51, 2020 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-609380

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 poses a great challenge to clinical and diagnostic services around the world. The need of biosafety practices can never be emphasised more than under current circumstances. The four pillars of biosafety namely, leadership, standard operating procedures, personal protective equipment (PPE) and engineering controls must be employed for effective and safe practices in the clinical setting in general and laboratory settings in particular. Risk assessment must be carried out before meeting up the diagnostic challenge for COVID-19 and essential biorisk management measures are required to be taken. In our resource-poor settings, we need to adapt safe but cost-effective and improvised solutions to ensure safe handling of clinical samples from COVID-19 patients in the laboratories. The correct use of PPE and their suitable alternatives are available for selection and use. Disinfection of the lab areas and safe disposal of the clinical samples from such patients is also of paramount importance.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Clinical Laboratory Techniques/standards , Containment of Biohazards , Coronavirus Infections , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral , Containment of Biohazards/methods , Containment of Biohazards/standards , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Humans , Infection Control/standards , Laboratories/standards , Pandemics/prevention & control , Personal Protective Equipment , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Risk Assessment
18.
JMIR Public Health Surveill ; 6(1): e18503, 2020 03 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-18717

ABSTRACT

The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the current COVID-19 a public health emergency of international concern on January 30, 2020. Countries in the Eastern Mediterranean Region (EMR) have a high vulnerability and variable capacity to respond to outbreaks. Many of these countries addressed the need for increasing capacity in the areas of surveillance and rapid response to public health threats. Moreover, countries addressed the need for communication strategies that direct the public to actions for self- and community protection. This viewpoint article aims to highlight the contribution of the Global Health Development (GHD)/Eastern Mediterranean Public Health Network (EMPHNET) and the EMR's Field Epidemiology Training Program (FETPs) to prepare for and respond to the current COVID-19 threat. GHD/EMPHNET has the scientific expertise to contribute to elevating the level of country alert and preparedness in the EMR and to provide technical support through health promotion, training and training materials, guidelines, coordination, and communication. The FETPs are currently actively participating in surveillance and screening at the ports of entry, development of communication materials and guidelines, and sharing information to health professionals and the public. However, some countries remain ill-equipped, have poor diagnostic capacity, and are in need of further capacity development in response to public health threats. It is essential that GHD/EMPHNET and FETPs continue building the capacity to respond to COVID-19 and intensify support for preparedness and response to public health emergencies.


Subject(s)
Capacity Building , Cooperative Behavior , Coronavirus Infections , Disease Outbreaks/prevention & control , Epidemiology/education , Global Health , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral , Public Health Surveillance/methods , Public Health/education , Social Networking , Betacoronavirus , Civil Defense , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Epidemiology/standards , Health Promotion , Humans , Mediterranean Region , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Public Health/standards , Public Health Practice , Workforce
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